Current WWE Intercontinental Champion, Big E, has spoken out about NXT call-ups and returning legends getting the spotlight over those who have ground their way to success.
For many years, a common gripe of WWE fans has been that returning stars such as Goldberg have gotten the proverbial rub over those already on either the red or blue brands. Pushed ahead of those there week in and week out, men like Kofi Kingston, Big E, Xavier Woods and more are more often than not left in the shadows.
Now, the former NXT Champion has joined Busted Open Radio in order to discuss his entry into the Royal Rumble on January 31 and those who come in for a one-and-done getting the better deal than men like him who form the spine of the company’s weekly television schedule:
“I want this run to feel earned. There are a lot of people who have been clamouring for me to do more for a long time. A lot times what you’ll see — and I won’t name names — you’ll see talent who are called up or brought in and they’re almost given too much too soon. Not that they don’t have the ability, but as a babyface especially, I don’t feel like I’m with you if you’ve been on the main roster two weeks and you already got a World Title shot. One of the best things that happened to Daniel Bryan is losing to Sheamus at WrestleMania in under 20 seconds. People had enough! They said ‘this guy has been grinding and been one of the best in the world for all these years and this is how you treat me?’ That’s what caused his explosion. I don’t think he got vastly better, not saying he hasn’t made steps to improve, but he was always that guy. When it feels earned and you’ve been through the wringer — not saying I haven’t earned it with the tag stuff, but I’m still fairly new to the singles run. I want it to be ‘he’s jumped through all the hoops and performed time and time again.’ I want to show week-in and week-out that I can do the solos backstage and solo promos and kill it. That I can do every aspect of the business as a singles competitor, and then it’s earned. In the same vein, I’m not here to turn down any opportunity either.
You know how it is, they will go through a list of part-timers, of the big names and big money guys who work once a year. They will go through that list and if they can’t get all those guys booked for that spot at WrestleMania, then it’s like ‘okay, who actually works here on a weekly basis and has been grinding and now maybe we give him an opportunity.'”
Currently on WWE Friday Night SmackDown, Big E is embroiled in a rivalry with Apollo Crews over the WWE Intercontinental Championship and will defend his gold against the challenger on January 22.
Credit for the interview: Busted Open Radio
h/t for the transcription: Fightful